MCACC officer talks about his ongoing recovery after dog attack in Chandler

(WARNING: Video contains graphic content. Viewer discretion advised)

CHANDLER, Ariz. (KSAZ) -- A Maricopa County Animal Care and Control officer is speaking out, after he survives an attack by a vicious dog.

Officer Rick Alva was about to take the rottweiler, which had an extensive bite history, into custody. Alva, who has bene on the job for 20 years and loves his career as an animal control officer, has never been bit, until last month. The 100+ lbs rottweiler attacked without warning, and the bite was so forceful that Alva will need three surgeries to treat his injuries.

Alva, along with a Chandler Police officer, were at the scene of the incident to impound a rottweiler that had already bitten three people. The courts had ruled the dog was vicious, and should be taken into custody. The dog's fourth bite, however, turned out to be its last. In less than 10 seconds, the dog jumps out from behind its owner, clamping down on Alba. After it released its grip, the Chandler Police officer fired two rounds.

"When the dog charged at me, the only thing I could do was protect my vitals. I just put my arm out there," said Alva. "The dog bite was so severe it actually cut off the circulation to my arm."

Alva would end up needing three surgeries., and doctors told him he'd likely recover 80% of his arm motion. Alva, meanwhile, is eager to get back to the job he's been doing for more than 20 years, and he is not going to let this bite end his career.

"People have asked me if this is going to change how I feel about doing my job in reality not at all its never crossed my mind that this is going to affect me in any way possible

Per Arizona's Dog Bite Laws, Alva can sue the dog's owner. In fact, one of the other three victims had already started the legal process against the rottweiler's owner, and that was why Alva went to impound the dog in the first place.


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